Tuesday Tip: Podcast #5
MSS-005-French-Canadian Given Names
I have found that names which were used by French Canadian families in the 19th and early 20th century are not all necessarily of French origin; you may notice that many are in fact French versions of now-obscure Greek and Latin names (mostly saints). I suspect some of the names were pure invention.
From what I know of Canadian history, in previous centuries many rural families had to rely on the local clergyman to come up with the spelling of their children’s names when writing out the birth certificate because they themselves could not read or write. This applied to both first names and last names in some cases, which is why you occasionally find alternate spellings of the same family name.
Sandra Goodwin does a great job explaining this in her podcast. Don’t forget to check out her Show Notes!